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Which Meditation Should I Do?

Choice is great when it opens up our world and brings us a sense of agency and freedom.

And… at times it can feel paralysing when we’re unsure which option – of the many – to choose. In meditation, I’ve certainly had the experience of dithering for so long about which recording to listen to that I lose the motivation completely (or the time slot), and end up not practising at all.

With time as our practice develops, we gain more confidence in knowing which practice will best meet our needs on any given day. And we might not always need to listen to a recording.

But then there are those times we just don’t feel sure what would be most supportive. Here’s a menu of meditations for those moments.

These are the same meditations I’ve shared on my main page, but organised by how you’re feeling, instead of by meditation type.

It’s not an absolute ‘prescription’ to be rigidly followed, but a few ideas to help get you unstuck.

This list includes some very short meditations of only a few minutes long – for those days when you’re especially busy, or just feeling resistant to meditating.

GUIDANCE NOTE:  These practices are devised to support stress reduction, but are not intended to address debilitating mental health conditions or severe emotional distress.  Do not listen to these recordings when driving, or when concentration on another task is important for safety.

WHEN FEELING SCATTERED OR STUCK IN ‘BUSY MIND’

Relaxing Into Body Awareness (22 mins) – a body scan meditation with a focus on meeting experience as it is, softening resistance and relaxing into ‘being with’ what’s happening, with greater confidence.

5-Minute Breathing Space – slightly longer than a standard breathing space, a short meditation to help re-establish mindful awareness.

Breathing With The Body (16 mins, Recorded Live) – finding a grounded presence through embodied awareness of the breath.

IF YOU’RE FEELING OVERWHELMED OR FRAZZLED

Basic Breathing Meditation (16 mins) – a short practice for bringing mindful awareness to the breath.

Basic Body Scan (22 mins) – a meditation inviting awareness to inhabit each area of the body.

Support Your Self (6 mins) – a short meditation to bring self-kindness into your day.

FOR DEVELOPING GREATER AWARENESS

Opening To All Of Your Experience (Recorded Live, 19 mins) – a gentle practice of ‘befriending’ – opening more fully to all the various aspects of our experience: the pleasant, the neutral and the unpleasant. Welcoming these in on our own terms can be empowering and help develop a broad, calm and stable awareness.

Mindfulness With Breathing (20 mins, Recorded Live)* – Establishing and maintaining contact with the breath, as felt in the body. Led on a practice afternoon for those with some meditation experience, less guidance than some of my other recordings.

Mindfulness With Feelings (22 mins, Recorded Live)* – A mindfulness with breathing practice, opening to a range of feelings, including energy and pleasant feelings. Allowing all experience to arise and pass, held in the container of the breath.

*These 2 meditations can be done ‘back-to-back’ if you would like an extended practice of 40 minutes.

IF YOU’RE FEELING TENSE

Calming Body, Heart & Mind (Recorded Live, 14mins) – a practice to bring kindness to difficult experience, drawn from the approach developed by Kristin Neff and Chris Germer – see their websites for more meditations.

Supported By The Earth (Recorded Live, 20 mins) – A grounding practice to encourage mindful relaxation. Guidance is given for lying down, so please adapt as necessary if you are seated. (Excuse the audio quality, I think I was lying a bit close to the mic!)

Imagining Compassion (7 mins) – connect with an image of a person, being or place that helps you feel supported, soothed and cared for.

WHEN YOU’RE SHORT ON TIME

Body Check-In (5 mins) – reconnect with embodied awareness.

5-Sense Check-In (5 mins) – drop into Being in the body.

Finding The Positive (5 mins) – taking in what feels good about the present moment.

You can find additional recordings on the Meditations page, organised in the following categories: Self-Kindness, Mindfulness With Breathing, Body Awareness and Short Meditations.

For personalised support with your meditation practice, I run mindfulness workshops and classes in Heaton Moor (South Manchester), and a Coaching Programme via Skype.

 

 

 

 

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